Rover captures an incredible view as it nears the peak called "Murray Buttes" on lower Mount Sharp.
NASA’s Curiosity rover has been exploring Mars since 2012. Currently, it is having a closer look at Murray Buttes, a peak that will provide Curiosity a passage to climb further up on Mount Sharp.
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Meanwhile, Curiosity has beamed back a stunning 360-degree panorama of “Murray Buttes,” providing a unique glimpse of Mars’ surface as seen from the rover’s point of view.
The view has been created by stitching together more than 100 images and all these images were taken by Curiosity's Mast Camera on August 6, 2016. The date also marks the fourth anniversary of Curiosity’s landing on Mars.
Murray Buttes has been named after the former director of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Bruce C. Murray while the footage shows a dark Mesa just left of the Curiosity’s robotic arm - a feature that stands about 50 feet high and is about 300 feet away from rover’s eye view.
“The buttes and mesas rising above this surface are eroded remnants of ancient sandstone that originated when winds deposited sand after lower Mount Sharp had formed.” NASA blog says.
Both these features are covered with material resistant to erosion. That is why these buttes and mesas are still firmly intact to Martian surface. Otherwise, the strong wind on Mars could have taken them from one place to another.
In the view, false color has been added to highlight differnt parts of the surface. The color adjustment shows how rocks and sand would appear under the daytime on Earth.
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Curiosity rover already had 1421 Martian days of operation and has driven 13.6 kilometers. Its mission was scheduled to end this year but it received a two-year extension so it can continue its job and provide more stunning details about Martian surface.